The Instigator
HoneyBadger
Pro (for)
Winning
6 Points
The Contender
JimmyRusltler
Con (against)
Losing
5 Points

Legalization of Marijuana for Recreational Use

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 3 votes the winner is...
HoneyBadger
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 10/15/2013 Category: Miscellaneous
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,478 times Debate No: 38953
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (2)
Votes (3)

 

HoneyBadger

Pro

Before I go into my position, I would like to say thanks to my opponent, whoever he/she would be. Without further ado, time to get into my position.

With the Marihuana (it was spelled that way back in the day) Tax Act of 1937, Congress asserted the power to ban marijuana for any use outside medicine and industry. (rope is made from the marijuana plant) The rule wasn't exactly enforced, as it was even easier to get it for "medicine" back then. The Act remained the only national legislation on the plant until 1970, when Congress passed the Controlled Substances Act. This act placed marijuana in the group of Schedule 1 drugs, meaning that the drug has no supposed medical use, with a high potential for abuse, in the same category as heroin. So, thus, the Drug War begins. A lot of criminals get rich from drugs, a lot of kids get messed up by contaminated drugs and overdoses, and a lot of money (our money) is wasted. Now fast forward to 2013, several states, mine included, have recognized medical marijuana. Even though the federal law remains unchanged on the subject of marijuana. 2 have gone as far as to say that they have legalized recreational use.

Now, even though I don't agree with the War on Drugs, I say that things like heroin and crystal meth are really bad. But those are chemically processed drugs. Marijuana is purely the plant, no chemicals. So I propose that we legalize marijuana for recreational use for individuals 21 or older on the idea that
Unlike alcohol, tobacco, or even prescriptions, weed is not addictive.
NO ONE in human history has ever died from weed. Ever.
Alcohol has killed at least 50,000 people a year from direct consumption, let alone the accidents (although that is largely a lack of personal responsibility). Tobacco has killed 450,000.
We could tax it and help pay down the national debt.
We would have fewer victimless criminals clogging our prisons.
The police, juries, and courts would have more time to deal with real crimes.
We could certainly ease some suffering without killing people. (alcohol will kill you over time)
We could regulate the quality so fewer people get sick from contamination or "cut" product.

And look who's telling you this; I've never taken a recreational drug, never. Not one joint, inhale, or hit. Never even had a sip of alcohol.

Thank you for reading.
HoneyBadger
JimmyRusltler

Con

I thank you for posting such an informative topic.

Although i agree with some of your arguments there are a few i do not agree with. I will point them out.
1) Now, even though I don't agree with the War on Drugs, I say that things like heroin and crystal meth are really bad. But those are chemically processed drugs. Marijuana is purely the plant, no chemicals. So I propose that we legalize marijuana for recreational use for individuals 21 or older on the idea that
2) Unlike alcohol, tobacco, or even prescriptions, weed is not addictive.
3) NO ONE in human history has ever died from weed. Ever.
Alcohol has killed at least 50,000 people a year from direct consumption, let alone the accidents (although that is largely a lack of personal responsibility). Tobacco has killed 450,000.
4) We would have fewer victimless criminals clogging our prisons.

I will not rebut these arguments in order.
1) Some Marijuana is chemically enhanced and has many harmful chemicals put into it (when made by drug dealers), I have witnessed myself the caliber of things they put into the plants to make it grow quicker. I do however agree that if it is legalized, only people over the age of 21 may consume it.
2) Weed is addictive. What marijuana does is it releases dopamine in your brain (hence the slang word for marijuana "dope). This is what gives the user the happy high feeling. The more the dopamine is released like this, the less it releases over time, making you want and crave for more and more. This is how depression from weed can sprout, the lack of dopamine makes the body feel sad and lonely, and also schizophrenia can come from weed usage. This is addiction. Cocaine and other hard drugs also release this chemical and this is why some weed users turn to harder drugs, to get more of a rush. I have seen friends and family addicted to this drug.
3) Weed may not have killed people, but weed related incidents have. Such as people driving while high and people operating heavy machinery. I also agree with you about how bad alcohol and tobacco is for your system but they are not on the same level of potency as weed.
4) I agree some people who are put in prison for weed related issues are not necessary, but then you get the drug cartels which weed is a main supplier of their funds. Legalizing Marijuana would only make the drug cartels more and more powerful and easy to sell their drug, making them more of a threat to everybody.

My credibility comes from 4 years of psychology study at university.

Thankyou, and cant wait to see your argument for the next round :)
Debate Round No. 1
HoneyBadger

Pro

I thank my opponent for coming and debating the topic of marijuana. Now, it's time to revamp my argument. I shall write my opponent's arguments, which in turn were based off of my arguments.

1) Some Marijuana is chemically enhanced and has many harmful chemicals put into it (when made by drug dealers), I have witnessed myself the caliber of things they put into the plants to make it grow quicker. I do however agree that if it is legalized, only people over the age of 21 may consume it.
2) Weed is addictive. What marijuana does is it releases dopamine in your brain (hence the slang word for marijuana "dope). This is what gives the user the happy high feeling. The more the dopamine is released like this, the less it releases over time, making you want and crave for more and more. This is how depression from weed can sprout, the lack of dopamine makes the body feel sad and lonely, and also schizophrenia can come from weed usage. This is addiction. Cocaine and other hard drugs also release this chemical and this is why some weed users turn to harder drugs, to get more of a rush. I have seen friends and family addicted to this drug.
3) Weed may not have killed people, but weed related incidents have. Such as people driving while high and people operating heavy machinery. I also agree with you about how bad alcohol and tobacco is for your system but they are not on the same level of potency as weed.
4) I agree some people who are put in prison for weed related issues are not necessary, but then you get the drug cartels which weed is a main supplier of their funds. Legalizing Marijuana would only make the drug cartels more and more powerful and easy to sell their drug, making them more of a threat to everybody.

Now, I shall write my responses (in order.)
1. Most of the plants that are rolled and smoked typically are not chemically enhanced. Besides, what I meant was that if one is going to make heroin, they must take the opium and add chemicals to it to get the final product. With marijuana it's not needed. Just pick it, dry it, roll it, smoke it.
2. While marijuana isn't physically addictive (you can't really grow a physical dependence on it), one can become addicted to the effects. That being said, just about anything can be addictive. I've seen almost everything from caffeine to ibuprofen being addictive. (I once heard of a guy that everyday popped 8 pills, just to feel the effect.)
3. While you and I are right in that weed doesn't directly kill people, you claim that people operating machinery while stoned are impaired. I say you are right. What I meant was that one shouldn't do anything high that they wouldn't do drunk. On the topic of the potency, I'm going to grab a verse from the Bible. Genesis 1:29 "And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth..." I think that marijuana could be the herb God is talking about.
4. The ones that, in my mind are unjustly thrown in prison are the non-violent possessors of weed. Thanks to the federal mandatory minimum sentencing laws, if I was caught with a few ounces of weed, I would get a minimum of 10 years in prison; just for possessing it. Then, you brought up the cartels; to explain my logic, I have to give you a brief history lesson. Back in 1919, Catholic groups thought the government should help them exercise their "right" to hate drinking. So, because the Catholics didn't like booze, they muscled through the 18th Amendment that outlawed "the manufacture, sale, and transportation of intoxicating liquors for beverage purposes" (religious and medicinal use was exempted). But Americans wanted their hootch, so then a whole army of violent gangland lowlifes stepped in to supply the demand. A lot of people got messed up (like going blind, or death) by improperly made liquor. In addition, a lot of innocent people got mowed down by choppers. So, after 14 years of alcohol prohibition, Congress got the idea of "this was a mistake, we gotta stop" and passed the 21st Amendment which repealed the 18th Amendment. Fast-forward to 1937, weed is banned and after almost 76 years of prohibition, Congress has yet to get the message. Now if weed is legalized, the Cartels would be out of a lot of blood money. Why would you buy cut, unsanitary weed from the dangerous man on the corner, when you can buy regulated, pure, inspected weed from the store down the street?

Now, I will be awaiting your response.
HoneyBadger
JimmyRusltler

Con

You have made some great examples in this round! Not what i was expecting :)

I shall write my rebuttal in order
1) I agree that it is not necessary, yet drug dealers do it. They use chemicals and other substances to make the plant grow quicker. This in the end ends up in the pot which can harm the user.
2) I agree that marijuana isn't "Physically" addictive, the form of addiction that becomes of the feeling is just as negative. The user will eventually start to not feel the effects and try something harder, this brings on the use of harder and more lethal drugs.
3) I think this debate should be strictly secular, so i would like to not comment anything about that verse from the Bible or YOUR opinion on it. Sorry :)
4) I agree that mandatory minimum sentencing is a horrible system. But I would like to comment on how the banning of booze is not the same as banning marijuana. The banning of booze was done for religious reasons, while the banning of marijuana is because of health reasons (the later effects of quicker decaying neurons and the slowing of synapses, not to mention depression, schizophrenia, anxiety etc.). Also even though many people have died because of drug cartels (related to the transportation of marijuana) the reason that the government has not permitted marijuana is because it is more trouble than its worth. Why would someone spend millions of dollars in an industry which destroys people mentally (yes i agree that cigarettes and alcohol do the same but weed would add to this) when the people can easily live without it.

A point i would also like to discuss is the social side of marijuana. Meaning in particular the type of culture and crowd it brings. In the 60's the hippy culture (generally associated with weed so i'm going to use it as an example) was seen as a psychedelic and colorful scheme. While weed usage nowadays attracts a more sort of scummy, unclean environment. Some weed users who smoke with other people view them people as friends, but they are not, they only stick around for the drug and that's it (many past experiences to back this up) . Many users today view weed as a sort of "do it because its cool" ideal (seen also commonly in underage drinking/smoking). This however is a terrible ideal to have when using something recreationally as it defeats the purpose of enjoying something because you want to, it takes the free will out of it.

Thats all im going to say this round, looking forward to the next! :)
Debate Round No. 2
HoneyBadger

Pro

I'm glad you thought my arguments were well made. Now, as my mom would say "time to harsh some mellow."

Your arguments as follows;
I shall write my rebuttal in order
1) I agree that it is not necessary, yet drug dealers do it. They use chemicals and other substances to make the plant grow quicker. This in the end ends up in the pot which can harm the user.
2) I agree that marijuana isn't "Physically" addictive, the form of addiction that becomes of the feeling is just as negative. The user will eventually start to not feel the effects and try something harder, this brings on the use of harder and more lethal drugs.
3) I think this debate should be strictly secular, so i would like to not comment anything about that verse from the Bible or YOUR opinion on it. Sorry :)
4) I agree that mandatory minimum sentencing is a horrible system. But I would like to comment on how the banning of booze is not the same as banning marijuana. The banning of booze was done for religious reasons, while the banning of marijuana is because of health reasons (the later effects of quicker decaying neurons and the slowing of synapses, not to mention depression, schizophrenia, anxiety etc.). Also even though many people have died because of drug cartels (related to the transportation of marijuana) the reason that the government has not permitted marijuana is because it is more trouble than its worth. Why would someone spend millions of dollars in an industry which destroys people mentally (yes i agree that cigarettes and alcohol do the same but weed would add to this) when the people can easily live without it.

A point i would also like to discuss is the social side of marijuana. Meaning in particular the type of culture and crowd it brings. In the 60's the hippy culture (generally associated with weed so i'm going to use it as an example) was seen as a psychedelic and colorful scheme. While weed usage nowadays attracts a more sort of scummy, unclean environment. Some weed users who smoke with other people view them people as friends, but they are not, they only stick around for the drug and that's it (many past experiences to back this up) . Many users today view weed as a sort of "do it because its cool" ideal (seen also commonly in underage drinking/smoking). This however is a terrible ideal to have when using something recreationally as it defeats the purpose of enjoying something because you want to, it takes the free will out of it.

Now, I must re-revamp my arguments.
1. Well, if you're a drug dealer, you're already breaking federal law. So, if you know that at any moment the feds or a rival dealer could try to shoot you and take your stash, does it really matter how toxic or non-toxic your weed is? Now, if it was legalized we could make it law that you can't treat your plant with growth chemicals.
2. It will only not have the effect if you use it at least 3 times a day, every day. Besides, the actual stats are that only 3% of hardcore stoners will move onto cocaine and heroin.
3. If you don't appreciate my verse, I can respect that and we'll keep this secular.
4. It's one of the most believed crocks in the drug world that drugs were banned due to health issues. Back in 1970, President Nixon signed the Controlled Substances Act into law, because he needed a moral battle on our soil to distract the voters from a morally questionable war in far away Vietnam. Besides, the drugs that remain legal (alcohol and tobacco) are actually MORE harmful for the body than marijuana, LSD, and MDMA (ecstasy) combined.
Since you brought up the social aspect, doesn't that act the same as drinking and smoking? Drinking and smoking are both often social activities, yet there isn't a guy with a gun threatening to imprison you for getting wasted.

I actually wanted to ask you, what do you think about the claim of marijuana being a gateway drug? Because the stats show that in 97% of cases, the first drug used by almost everyone is either alcohol or tobacco. So, why don't we hear that alcohol and tobacco are gateway drugs?

Thanks again for debating,
HoneyBadger
JimmyRusltler

Con

Okay ill state my final rebuttal and summarize.

1) yes it doesn't matter if the drug dealer gets busted but the user is not informed of what chemical are being used to enhance the growth rate of the plant. Also some users may be allergic to the chemicals used and the variations of the content of these chemicals making the drug a lot more lethal to some people (because they don't know the content).
2) I would like to say that your statistic should have been referenced to back it up. Not to mention that the people who were given the survey may have been lying or under any different circumstance (who would want to admit they have a drug problem?) but other than that the statistic does not hold very much merit to it.
3) I'm sorry but if you think that ecstasy and LSD are not harmful, that's just ill informed. They are called hard drugs for a reason and they damage your system irreparably. Not to mention that many Marijuana users smoke tobacco with it, making it more potent.
Actually that's the police ha ha.

Firstly stating that alcohol and tobacco are the first drugs that people is incorrect as there are too many numerous other drugs to mention. However focusing on those two particular drugs mentioned; alcohol cannot be a gateway to different types of alcohol because you simply just consume more. in regard to tobacco that again cannot accompany further tobacco as there are only other variants. But I will note that tobacco is used with marijuana so in a sense it is a gateway.

To summarize the usage of marijuana effects you mentally and can lead to many psychological disorders. And if marijuana is so safe, would children allowed to be EXPOSED to this marijuana culture and usage?

Thank you for this interesting debate :)
Debate Round No. 3
2 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Posted by Ike-Jin-Park 3 years ago
Ike-Jin-Park
Continuation from RFD:

On the other hand, Pro successfully draw a parallel between legal drugs and marijuana, explaining that marijuana's harm was existent in perfectly legal drugs as well. This established that marijuana may be harmful, but the harm was at a reasonable level.

With Con losing out on the core of the dispute, Pro prevailed.
Posted by TheSilentHorseman 3 years ago
TheSilentHorseman
That's interesting. I just got done debating this topic in the context of the state of Georgia.
3 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Vote Placed by thp078 3 years ago
thp078
HoneyBadgerJimmyRusltlerTied
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Total points awarded:30 
Reasons for voting decision: While both parties were able to hold their own, ultimately, I felt that pro had stronger arguments. Also, I was a bit disappointed that con tried to use authority in an attempt to back up claims at the end of the first round. I will also say that I found it not only strange, but downright irrelevant to mention the bible verse pro brought up.
Vote Placed by Hirakula 3 years ago
Hirakula
HoneyBadgerJimmyRusltlerTied
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Reasons for voting decision: This was a very interesting debate, well-fought on both sides. Sources went to Con, because Pro gave statistics with no source. Arguments went to Con because I felt that Pro had lots of loose arguments, undeveloped, and that Pro simply had an opinion more than had an argument. That being said, I was pulled back and forth between each rebuttal, it was a great job!
Vote Placed by Ike-Jin-Park 3 years ago
Ike-Jin-Park
HoneyBadgerJimmyRusltlerTied
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Reasons for voting decision: In general, Pro's argument was more comprehensive and covered broader grounds in this debate. Legalisation of marijuana debates need to focus on if the harm of this substance is harmful enough to make weed illegal. It is a given that marijuana inflict damage on users but so does coffee. Thus, main focus needs to be if this harm is so harmful to the point in which weed needs to be illegalised. Pro, starting from the beginning of the debate, argued vigorously that harmful aspects of marijuana is the same, if not less, when compared to legal substances like alcohol or cigarette. Pro also raised arguments regarding tax revenue and saving victimless criminals from serving time. Although Con downplayed most of Pro's case, Con failed to establish that marijuana is in fact baneful enough to be illegal. It has been proven at the end of the debate that marijuana is not a helpful substance. But Con's duty was to land this on to the motion and prove this harm calls for ban.